on August 22, 1997 by Dwayne E. Leslie
   From the director of "Cronos" comes a near-future science thriller. In it, Susan Tyler (Oscar winner Mira Sorvino) and her husband ("The Net's" Jeremy Northam) must stop the "Strickler" disease from wiping out an entire generation. The carrier of the pediatric epidemic is the common cockroach--but, really, how common is a cockroach that is bigger than your palm? Unaffected by the creatures' size, a doctor casually refers to one crawling on the floor as "just a baby."    As a result of a genetic splicing procedure that altered cockroach DNA, a "Judas Breed" has been created. This type is able to secrete enzymes that speed up the metabolism of the normal roaches, causing them to starve to death. The Judas strain was supposed to die off, but something survived. After a few years, the human race finds it has a new threat to deal with when the biological counteragents begin to mimic its predator, man. In the film, all of this happens within the first few minutes; any audience members arriving late or not paying close attention will have little clue to what, why and how incidents transpire.    The collaboration of writers on this film ruined what could have been a great thriller. Along with trying to conjure terror by rehashing horror-flick cliches, they seem to intentionally slow the movie's pace to let scenes sink in before the next jolt. Although close-up special effects are good, "Mimic" is a mere appetizer for hungry hard-core horror fans. For the more squeamish soft-core buffs, on the other hand, the film will shoot the occasional chill up their spines. Starring Mira Sorvino, Jeremy Northam, Charles S. Dutton and Josh Brolin. Directed by Guillermo Del Toro. Written by John Sayles, Matthew Greenberg, W. Peter Iliff and Matthew Robbins. Produced by Bob Weinstein and B.J. Rack. A Miramax release. Horror. Rated R for terror/violence and language
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